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Running shoes(20 Posts)
I want to start running for exercise but not sure what to do about running trainers. Is it advisable to have a running (gait) analysis or can I just go shopping and try loads on to find a comfy pair? I’m aware that they need to be half a size bigger to allow for feet swelling.
I don’t mind having a gait analysis but I’m seeing mixed messages. Some say it’s vital to prevent injury’s and others are saying there no evidence it will make a difference. If I don’t have one done can I just look at my old shoes to figure out where I need support? Finding it all a bit confusing.
Need advice from experienced runners 🙂
Gait analysis helps you choose between a neutral sole and a supportive sole (it's all to do with the angle of your foot/ankle when it strikes the ground). It won't make an enormous difference to your running, but might help you avoid some injuries, especially when racking up the mileage.
If you don't want all that yer, then get a comfy neutral sole trainer.
You need to size up one size (so your toes have plenty of clearance) and think about what surface you are running on mainly, road or trail?
Even though I am reluctant to recommend the brand because of one of its latest promo campaign, a good, cushioned, neutral road shoe (suitable as 'entry' level, and good for firm surfaces and tarmac) I'd the Nike Vomero. It's been around for years, so previous season's colours can often be found at a discount
Thank you! I will have a look at those trainers
Our local running shop does free gait analysis if you buy the trainers, so if you're prepared to pay full price I think it's worth doing. Once you've done it and know what works you can get the same ones online for cheaper when the originals wear out.
Half marathon runner of 10+ years. Yes get a gait analysis as you may be naturally running on the insides or outsides of your feet. Wear a sports bra to your gait analysis, take your old trainers and don’t wear anything too restrictive (once had a GA in tight skinny jeans, never again). Good luck on your running journey.
You only need the gait analysis once to find out which type of trainer you need.
Trying them on in a shop is also important for first pair as different brands can feel totally different.
Once you've found a pair that work for you you've got the option of finding cheaper versions online (bearing in mind their annoying habit of changing them each year so the next version of a tried and trusted shoe can suddenly become a blister generator for example)
Thanks everyone! I’ve decided it’s worth getting a gait analysis to try and avoid an injury in the future! Thanks for your advice
Gait analysis is only relevant if you run on paved surfaces. It's not any use if you mostly go on trails.
Then if corse there are minimalist running shoes and a school of thought that says no padding is best ....
Me I run a little in sketchers go run cos they are dead comfy. I guess if I ever graduate c25k I’ll get a fair analysis and shoes to celebrate.
It’s a pain that you can’t pay for the gait analysis. It’s , as far as I can tell ties to buying shoes - which are of course the current expensive models ( when last years will be fine and 1/2 price !)
Don’t get anything that is too expensive to bin when it starts to loose support /spring / grip. Worn out shoes are bad news.
Our local running shop charges £20 for gait analysis if you don't buy anything, so it is an option!
If you are just starting I would see how you go before spending on expensive trainers. I did C25k in my normal trainers without an issue. I now run lots of 10k’s and had a gait analysis and invested in some upper end trainers offering specific support. Tbh there is not a huge difference. I would recommend a size bigger though as you will end up with bruised toenails an end to wearing sandals.
Gait analysis really helped me understand my running style and the shoes I now wear are excellent for cushioning my knees in particular.
My DH is a lifelong runner and wears the same trainers as me - his need replacing every six months or so as he immediately feels when the cushioning has gone in his knees (he's had knee issues, so for him to be able to run again is testament to the shoes). Good luck!
Not a fan of gait analysis, personally. All it does is try and put a sticking plaster on the problem, rather than address it. For example, I used to overpronate (particularly when tired), but that's because my form was awful and I was carrying too much weight. Most running shops would've just tried to put me in supportive shoes, rather than looking for the cause of the problem - thus leading to more potential injury problems, not less.
Glute strengthening exercises, IME, solve a lot of running gait issues.
That aside, I like a neutral shoe with a bit of cushioning, but not too built-up. Nike Pegasus and Brooks Ghost are absolute stars of the genre. They've been going forever, are eternally popular, and there's a reason why. You can also usually pick up last year's models quite cheaply online.
Also, I only go half a size up, not a full size. Even for marathon training etc, I don't think a full size is necessary.
@Runningonempty84 I totally agree. When I started running I promptly went to a very specialist shop in London with full analysis and got recommended some very structured shoes for over pronation.
The next two years I struggled to run more than 2 minutes. My shins, knees, ankles and hips were in agony. I declared myself a non-runner, blamed myself and forgot about it.
I then moved to Australia last year and decided, while having a barefoot stroll on the beach to have a jog. 10 minutes later I was still running, totally pain free!
I now run barefoot when possible and if not I use a barefoot style shoe. Nike frees are my favourite and I'm about to trial Vivobarefoot.
I now run about 30k a week and no trouble running nonstop for 2 hours! Watching videos shows how over structured trainers force a heel strike which was the root of my problems! Barefoot means a natural front or mid foot strike.
If you want a more forward foot strike, try Hoka.
And yes, gait analysis looks at how you are running in terms of foot strike from the rear to look at pronation. It does not look at why you are running like that and if there are other changes you should make. If you want that, then you probably need to book some sessions with a problem related running coach or join a club high offers at least some coaching)
I think the name 'gait analysis' makes t easy to form wrong assumptions about what it is.
Thank you everyone! Very interesting hearing the different opinions. I haven’t gone for a gait analysis yet and hearing these reply’s has me re thinking my decision to have it done.
Most (but not all) gait analysis in running shops is poor - the staff have minimal training and will often fit what they say to sell you the shoes they want to sell. They usually only look at what your feet are doing when to do it properly the whole body needs to be looked at - the way your feet land is linked to what is happening much higher up. If you want a gait analysis, get a sports physio or running coach to do it. But to be quite honest, if you are starting out just get yourself a pair of running shoes that feel comfortable and start with those. Build your running up gradually and if they are not right for your feet, you'll be able to tell.
I’ve never had a gait analysis but I have looked at the bottom off my shoes to see where they are wearing more. You can do a wet foot test on paper I think (try googling) to see how it works as this looks at arches & if you need support I think? Try buying some shoes online & run up down the stairs at home on carpet see how they feel.
My DH had a gait test waste of money as he got made to but expensive trainers which gave him knee issuesthen he switched brands no problems now running HMs. check The width of your foot as well can especially ladies as some shoes fit better than others. I buy new balance ladies wide fit D in a size bigger and love them. I tried the men’s which in theory were same width but they didn’t fit and I measured the sole it was different shape
Oh gosh excuse the typos I’m on my phone 🙄after the update!
I was recommended the exact same shoe in the running shop as I was when I went to the Brooks shoe page and followed their instructions (when you stand on one leg... when you put feet together...), so if you haven't time to get an analysis, it's worth looking at that page.